Check out the list of employers attending the career fair and pick a few companies that interest you. Do in-depth research on them. Find out what they do, what their values are, and what they are looking for. This knowledge will convey you are confident, professional, and make you stand out among peers. Then build a special resume around these things and get a specific pitch for them about why they need YOU.

Lots of resumes. Get a padfolio and fill it up with resumes. Bring 10-15 general resumes, but also be sure to bring the tailored resumes for the companies you are interested in that will be attending the fair. Often times recruiters will read your resume while you are standing there, which gives you a chance to comment on sections or answer questions.

Dress like you would to an interview--in professional or business casual attire. This is just as much an interview as any other first encounter you have with a potential employer. Remember, this first impression could determine if you get a "real" interview (but be prepared to interview on the spot!).

Here are some general guidelines on professional attire.

Aside from dressing professionally, a first impression will also include:

  • A good firm handshake.
    • Make firm contact matching the pressure from their hand. Shake from the elbow rather than the wrist. Practice with friends, the career services office, or even faculty to ensure you’ve got it down.
  • Eye Contact
    • Maintain good eye contact throughout your conversation. Eye contact ensures you are interested and engaged in the conversation. 
  • Smile
    • A friendly smile conveys confidence and interest in the company.
  • Good Hygiene
    • On the day of the fair be sure to shower, brush your teeth, and apply deodorant. Try to minimize or avoid perfume/colognes as many people are sensitive to fragrances.

Have a prepared pitch to give the recruiters. This summary should include things like, who you are, what you major is, and what you are interested in.  If you can, also include details about how you can benefit the company. Your elevator speech should be delivered in less than 30 seconds. Remember, you only have one chance at a first impression, so make sure you practice your speech in front of a mirror and friends prior to the event.

Easier said than done sometimes, but don't be nervous! Remember, companies are LOOKING for someone to hire. YOU are that person. Stay positive, be confident, and your hard work will pay off!

Ask employers for their business card. This will allow you to send them a thank you note and build connections outside of the career fair.

Contact Information

Student Employment & Career Readiness Center

Student Union Building/Center For Student Leadership 202

500 8th Avenue

Lewiston, Idaho 83501